Resolute Bourbon Barrel Russian Imperial Stout - Brothers Craft Brewing

Not Rated.
Resolute Bourbon Barrel Russian Imperial StoutResolute Bourbon Barrel Russian Imperial Stout

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260 Ratings

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Ratings: 260
Reviews: 31
rAvg: 4.38
pDev: 11.19%
Wants: 163
Gots: 96 | FT: 25
Brewed by:
Brothers Craft Brewing visit their website
Virginia, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  13.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: VBWharfRat on 09-11-2013

Russian Imperial Stout aged in bourbon barrels
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 260 | Reviews: 31
Reviews by JamieDuncan:
Photo of JamieDuncan
4.95/5  rDev +13%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A good friend brought this for a beer snobbery session at me beer guru's house. Unbelievable! One of the best beers I've ever had. absolutely could not believe it was that strong, unbelievably smooth and easy to drink with an unreal flavor. Can not say enough about how good this beer is.

More User Reviews:
Photo of jlindros
4.48/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Bottle 1867/2000, big thanks to rudzud for sharing.

Small super dark head fades quickly, long oily legs, so pitch black. 4.5

Aroma explodes with dark malts stout and bourbon, big thick fudgey dark choc, like black forest cake without cherries, so much bourbon, layers of bourbon barrel, barrel juice, fresh oaky bourbon, and some roast notes, very little booze, faint coffee, touch caramel. 4.5

Taste starts with dark black malts, acrid roast, touch burnt coffee but not a ton, little barrel char as bourbon washes over, nice barrel juice, less than the aroma but obvious. Mild fudgey dark choc, cocoa, etc, little sweet caramel note, powdered cocoa, little bitter hop note and little roast bitterness. Faint dark fruits and nuts, little booze note, touch of booze warmth, heavy rich beer. Finish sticky costs the mouth, more fudge, dark choc cocoa, little roast, more bourbon and barrel notes, flash of booze. 4.5

Mouth is full rich bod, little viscous, but slightly thin, decent carb light booze but hidden well. 4.25

Overall this was delicious! Very enjoyable, waves of bourbon which I love, barrel juice even, nice dark malts, cocoa fudge, etc. Quite tasty. 4.5

Photo of rudzud
4.48/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Shared with JLindros bottle number 1867/2000. Bottled 2/14 (Batch 2)

A - Poured into a Kate the Great tulip a super dark black motor oil hue with a thin half finger dark chocolate head that fades rather quickly to leave a light halo. The legs are just awesome. 4.5 (x .05 = .225)

S - Aromas of big bold bourbon, super dense fudge and brownies. Bakers chocolate galore, loads of vanilla and barrel. Little roast, really no booze and this is 13.5%. Super light coffee and nuts. Lovely. 4.5 (x .2 = .9)

T - Taste is similar to the nose, loads of rich bourbon, heavy chocolate, dark bakers cocoa, the typical Russian imperial darker sweet fruits. Loads of black malts. This isn't remotely hot, but you just know it's double digits. Great bourbon comes back afterwards and nice roast and barrels. The finish is more sweeter bourbon. Really well balanced across the board. 4.5 (x .45 = 2.025)

M - Mouthfeel is creamy, though slightly thin. Alcohol is hidden very well, surprisingly so. 4.25 (x .1 = .425)

O - Overall this beer was awesome, just like the other Three Brothers. Love the bourbon. I have one more in the cellar and think this is at its peak. 4.5 (x .2 = .9)

Total Rating Score: 4.47
Serving Type: Bottle

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.81/5  rDev -13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter. Bottled 3/15/2014.

Appearance - Black. Mocha head. Medium collar.

Smell - Oak. Vanilla. Sharp boozy bourbon. Deep fudge. Molasses.

Taste - Oak is still sharp, but the stout overpowers it a bit. Deep dark chocolate. Sweet molasses. Vanilla. Oak. Bourbon is the persistent aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Heavy body. Boozy. Medium carbonation.

Overall - Pretty good. It's rated 4.5 as I rate it, which I think is crazy, but it's a good beer. Huge, though.

Photo of Jimmys
4.48/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

packaged on 03 15 14 (I think). bottle 685 of 2000.

A: I think I could hear this thing pouring from the bottle. thick, black, sludge. I genuinely cannot think of another beer I have had that is this dark.

S: aroma is varied. vanilla. get a lot of wood. a little bit of char.

T: it kind of reminds me of a chocolate milkshake. so much vanilla and residual chocolate sweetness, this thing is a dessert. almost too sweet. a tobacco leather flavor lingers in the finish. any boozy heat is really a non-factor. enough there to let me know this is a big beer, but not off-putting in the least. there is a hint of oxidation in there as well.

M: silken, rich, thick. CO2 is low enough for my liking for the style.

D: I bought this back in June in a great bottle shop in VA. Didn't know much about this brewery or this beer, but was very happy to see the high remarks via BA. was going to cellar this, but since it is my only one I figured I should sample fresh. only imagining how this will do over time, I say drink this fresh. tastes great, no flaws, no excessive heat, im not sure what will lessen with time so I say drink fresh.

Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.11/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From BeerAdvocate Magazine #86 (Mar 2014):

Roasty, Wood, Boozy, Sweet

Without even putting this beer to our lips, we know it’s a beast. Barrel aging is not a trend that has been overdone, not even the bourbon variety. It’s popular enough to be its own little sub-style and a standard for many brewers, and Three Brothers throws down with Resolute. Hitting all the right notes and keeping that 13.5% ABV tame shows that great care was taken here. Well done!

STYLE: Russian Imperial Stout | ABV: 13.5% | AVAILABILITY: Limited

Photo of YodersBeerEmporium
4.56/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very strong but well balance BBA RIS. Vee nice mouthfeel with nice bourbon notes!

Photo of KYGunner
4.09/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours like dirty motor oil with a dark brown near black color, a great viscosity and a dense head.

The nose sets up with earthy tones like wood and stone. It has a mix of chocolate, molasses, dark fruits and caramel. All the while a deep bourbon alcohol runs through the aroma.

The flavor presents a lot of barrel, oak or wood, chocolate fudge, earthiness, bourbonesque alcohol, alcohol soaked dark fruit and did I say alcohol.

Served at any temperature, and I tried from straight out of the fridge to room temperature on a couple bottles and this is just boozy. Cut the booze and it's worth the score but the alcohol is too strong.

Photo of ThickNStout
3.85/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Corked and caged 750mL bottle from ThatCracker (thanks man!). Cellar Series Vol 1, bottle 425 of 2000. No bottle date but I beleive this was released in Dec 2013. Served in a Bruery snifter.

Pours jet black with a half finger mocha hued head. The foam quickly settles to a thin halo and wisps across the top without leaving any lace.

Smells of chocolate bourbon balls. Sweet bourbon, soft chocolate, earthy vanilla, faint oak and caramel.

Taste follows the nose. Strong but not over powering bourbon and fudge are the predominant flavors. Also notes of burnt caramel, oaky vanilla, bittersweet char, mild dark fruits, vaguely nutty and a nip of booze. Goes down quite easily, particularly considering the 13.5% alcohol bill.

Creamy, medium thick body with low-to-moderate carbonation. Chalky, chocolately, bourbon infused finish.

A solid bourbon barreled imperial stout. Far from a favorite for my tastes but well above average and I'm glad to have tried it.

Photo of BGsWo22
3.5/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I am starting to be harsher on my ratings

Photo of danieljspiker
4.86/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Preface, I bartend at Capital Ale House in Harrisonburg, where we have this on tap, but this is one of my go-to beers, both for selling and consuming.

Start with appearance, nearly jet black, nice thick head that slowly rises and settles at the top of the beer with a very dark brown froth.

On the nose, direct bourbon flavor, with subtle chocolate, malt and roast notes

First taste you get is bourbon, quickly balanced with the richness of Russian Imperial Stout, tons of flavor come through

Finish is smooth, as the bourbon blends with the beer and delivers a satisfying finish

Overall I think this is one of Three Brother's best beers that they've come out with so far. While not their flagship, it is a beer that any stout or dark beer drinker should try at least once. Plan to cellar a bottle for at least a year if not longer to see how the balance holds up, but given that the RIS was aged in bourbon barrels for more than 10 months, not anticipating a massive change on that front.

Photo of surfcaster
4.68/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Enjoyed on tap

A: Pitch black opaque beauty with a gorgeous brown head that was thin but left lacing.

S. Sweet bourbon and vanilla with a bit of expresso fudge.

T: HUGE beer. Big on bourbon and fairly sweet with a vanilla balancing out the dark chocolate backbone.

M: Big but really surprised that at 13%, it was not syrupy. Creamy and smooth. Perfect.

O: Unbelievable effort for this little outfit in Va. Gives KBS and Event Horizon a run for the money and definitely tradeworthy.

Photo of SportsandJorts
4.49/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: pours a deep black . a smallish brown head. Strong retention. Small brownish legs.

Smell: espresso, bourbon, vanilla, chocolate. Oak and roast.

Taste: Opens with alcohol and bourbon. Roasted malts and chocolate. Dark fruit notes of molasses. More bourbon vanilla and oak.

Mouthfeel: nice and full. Bourbon slick and oaky notes. Alcohol and warmth.

Overall: a very good bourbon imperial stout. great notes of bourbon, barrel, and stout. good complexity with the dark notes and slight espresso. can't wait for this ones bottle release.

Photo of VBWharfRat
4.48/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

BA Russian Imperial Stout, debuted in the tap room for the grand opening weekend. Fun party, cool music, great beer.

Well, what to say about this one. Smells like bourbon and chocolate and pretty much tastes the same. Booze super well hidden. Might be the best beer these guys have made, and they've made some good ones in the short time they've been open. Adam told me they still have like fourteen or something barrels of this one still aging, so if you missed it look for it again at a party in the future or maybe bottles this winter season? One can only hope (guys, if you're reading this you should totally bottle some and just give me one).

Photo of bowzer4birdie
4.53/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle 701 of 2000. This is one of the better recent BA RIS I have had. Certainly better than Dark Lord IMO. My only critique would be that I wish I could taste more of the barrel influence. If I could, I'd rate this one a 4.75 or higher.

Photo of dar482
4.48/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A fine barrel aged imperial stout with quite a bit of heat up front. Some acrid and dark chocolate bitterness to cut through the beer. A medium plus to full mouthfeel.

The punch of alcohol is a bit abrasive at times.

Photo of BEERchitect
4.4/5  rDev +0.5%

For those who like a little stout with their whisky, the Three Brothers brewing trio offers their flagship barrel-aged imperial stout. One with the common roast, complexity, charm, but with the pow... pow... power of straight bourbon to push the session into high freakin' gear.

Tall, dark and rip-your-heart-out handsome, the stout layers into the glass with its onyx-like body releasing a dense and condensed core of foam. With the very first swirl of the snifter, the wafts of caramel-sweetened bourbon leaps right out, encouraged by elements of char, cocoa, campfire, dark fruit and spice.

Its taste layers onto the tongue with the saturating sweetness of fudge but balanced with the roast of espresso. The apex of taste happens on the middle palate as those bittersweet chocolates, coffee, walnut and smoldering sweetness merge with coconut and licorice to round out the lush and velvety body ahead of the beer's waning moments.

Finishing with nearly brow-beaten heat, the punch of oak-soaked whisky is undeniable. Underneath the roasty cream, the penetration of booze numbs the tongue and spices up its soft tissues, faintly pretending to be capsaicin at times. Its lush texture keeps the roast balanced deep in aftertaste as the stout lingers indefinitely into the next sultry sip.

Photo of dhartogs
4.86/5  rDev +11%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Wow, had this at the brewery. At 13.5% this sucker is well balanced, Not as sweet as you would expect from a high gravity beer and that's a good thing.

The pour was beautiful, creamy thick head, motor oil black. Beautiful color left a nice resin on the glass.

Smell, heavy chocolate light bourbon

Felt good in my mouth.

Overall, this is the clear front runner of beer of the year for me. At first sip, I had a childish permagrin on my face and was just thoroughly enjoyable.

Photo of mr-jj
3.37/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into 4 samplers from a 750 ml bottle. Reviewed on 12/28/14 - entered from notes.

Color is black, with minimal head. Very viscous appearance. Aroma is mild with notes of pear, anise, chocolate and vanilla. Flavor is also mild, with a stronger pear taste along with the anise and chocolate flavors. Not really what I was expecting. Body is lighter than I expected but still viscous. Alcohol is well hidden. This was part of a tasting with BCBS, BCBCS and Fremont KDS and it didn't compete with the strong flavors and aromas of those beers. Maybe by itself it would have had a better showing.

Overall, it's a good beer, but well short of great.

Photo of ChicagolandBeerGuy
4.69/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Batch #2, bottled early 2014 (I think) and popped 12/24/14.

Photo of JackMorgan
5/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is one of those bottles you buy a few of. Drink one right away because it's there, beaconing you like the darkness of night and a warm, cloudy pillow filled with electricity. Keep the others in that special place you have in your home where you secret away the things you don't want other people to come across.

The bourbon embrace of balanced alcohol: not too tight; not too loose.
The sweet stickiness of malt: the vanilla kiss your high school girlfriend gave you at 2 AM when the whole world had no parents.
The coffee shop chocolate suggestion of mochas on rainy Seattle street corners.
Oak like an Amish furniture store: the soft sawdust on the workbench, like petting a scared rabbit.

Yes, Virginia, you have a new brilliant light to keep you safe in the beer world.

Photo of kegnation
4.82/5  rDev +10%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Fantastic beer. Aroma of bourbon sweet malt great Russian imperial with the bourbon characteristics. Mouth feel is spot on for style. Balanced great beer. Not heavy on the bourbon or malt. Fantastic aftertaste of bourbon and sweet malt. Would love to see them do this year after year.

Photo of argock
3.78/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a capped 750 ml brown bottle into a clear glass snifter. Bottle 156 of 2000 hand inked on the bottle label (nice label too). 2014 vintage. Purchased at Market Street Wineshop (Charlottesville, VA).

A: Very dark brown, not translucent, with 1-finger of chocolate cake batter head with decent retention and only spare spots of lacing.

S: Very oaky and tannic with herbal hopping but dominated by bourbon edge, dark chocolate, and pretty hefty roasted dark malt edge.

T: The flavor profile is dominated by bourbon character, stronger than I like, with tannic oak notes also very strong. The base stout is a little shy on sweetness, and I don't get much if any vanilla and minimal dark fruit character. The alcohol character is well-hidden. This BB stout falls in the heavy bourbon, earthy group for me. I wish is had a little more coffee and sweetness.

M: Thinner than I like for this style, with medium carbonation and higher than average dryness, which only enhances the thin character.

O: I didn't dislike Resolute, but it just doesn't work with what I like. It has heavier bourbon, low vanilla, more tannins and oak character, and minimal sweetness and coffee character. My wife loved it and I gave her 30% of my half. I am not surprised that many people really love this beer as it is a big guy, no doubt -- it just isn't my cup of tea, but it is a nicely crafted beer.

Photo of maximum12
3.55/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Thanks to wvdfh120fan who answered by plea to try this brew. 750ML bottle, 1325 out of 2000 bottled on 3/14/14. At least that what I think it says, but I'm comfy & it's now waaaay across the room.

The pour is appropriate black (which should be a Valspar paint color) with low carbonation befitting a muscle-bound RIS. Nose is heavy on the chocolate, lighter on vanilla, sweet malts. Inviting.

Resolute - Bourbon Barrel Aged is a G-Rated flick. This is like a checklist of bourbon-barrel attributes. Bourbon? Moderately heavy. Vanilla? Check. Sweet malts, chocolate, light booze nibble on the end? Check. A bit thin - which is hard to believe, wracking in at over 13% ABV. It does go down easily, which might be its best attribute. Or worst, if you try to take on a full bomber or two.

All the notions of a big, barrel-aged stout without much distinction. Not bad, but nothing to make it stand out from the pack. Pretty good.

Photo of chadwicktorres
4.5/5  rDev +2.7%

Love this and can't wait for the variant release. heavy on the bourbon but still balanced with roasty notes.

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Resolute Bourbon Barrel Russian Imperial Stout from Brothers Craft Brewing
97 out of 100 based on 260 ratings.